My name is Rhys, a first time dad blogging about my adventures and experiences of being a parent. [email protected]

Young people’s graffiti mural to tackle anti-social behaviour in Blaenau Gwent

Photo credit: Alexander Gold

As part of a new Taskforce formed to address anti-social behaviour, Blaenau Gwent Youth Service has run a project for four young people to create a graffiti artwork mural in the new multi-story carpark on the former Steelworks site in Ebbw Vale. This project aims to reduce anti-social behaviour in the area and deter vandalism, with a hope of providing young people with a new-found respect for their community.

Photo credit: Alexander Gold

Through a number of sessions, four young people that currently work with the youth service staff based in Ebbw Fawr Learning Community were responsible for deciding and creating a concept for a graffiti artwork piece to feature on a wall in the nearby carpark. Taking inspiration from the former Steelworks site, the young people decided upon a theme of Local History and Community, involving the former integrated steel mill, mining, rugby, and more. Ideas and inspirations were passed to local artist, Anthony Smith, to assist in the design and creation of the work.

Over the course of two days, the young people worked hard to construct their mural, using stencils, spray paint, and free hand techniques.

The young people said that they felt the project had benefited them in various ways:

“This project has helped me control my anger; I don’t get into trouble as much outside of school and I have learnt a new skill.”

“It has helped me improve my confidence”.

“I have enjoyed helping the community and it was a lot of fun to do.”

A spokepersons for the Youth Service said: “We would personally like to thank the young people for their time and effort in creating the mural, along with the youth service staff, Josh Bowen and Lauren Dobbs, for their support and dedication to the project. Moving forward, Blaenau Gwent Youth Service aims to run the same project across several areas in the borough, encouraging young people to take pride and responsibility in their community.”

Blaenau Gwent Youth Service is part of a new Taskforce between Blaenau Gwent Council, Gwent Police, and Tai Calon Community Housing. The taskforce works collectively, taking the steps towards reducing anti-social behaviour in our communities.